Zep Inc., located in Atlanta, GA, has agreed to pay $905,000 to resolve alleged violations of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today. As part of the settlement, Zep Inc., has certified that it is now in compliance with FIFRA.
The alleged violations are related to the sale and distribution of the unregistered and misbranded pesticide, “Formula 165”, ” as a supplemental distributor without first obtaining a supplemental distribution agreement with the registrant between April 21, 2010, and January 6, 2012. The lack of a supplemental agreement also meant that ZEP Inc. was not authorized to manufacture or sell or distribute the pesticide.
In addition, EPA alleged that Zep Inc., gave false certifications of compliance with FIFRA Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) on documents associated with the registration of three pesticides in its line of Enforcer brand insecticides - Enforcer RoachMax Bait, Enforcer AntMax Bait and Enforcer Fire Ant Bait. Pesticide registrants are required to certify their compliance with the GLP on any testing or studies submitted to the EPA in support of a registration.
Under EPA’s antimicrobial testing program, ZEP Formula 165 was evaluated, and EPA’s testing showed that contrary to labeling claims, the product was ineffective against Mycobacterium tuberculosis. A pesticide is misbranded and in violation of FIFRA if it makes false or misleading label claims.
The purpose of FIFRA is to ensure that no pesticides are produced, imported, distributed, sold, or used in a manner that poses an unreasonable risk to human health or the environment. The EPA is committed to ensuring that products are properly registered which includes meeting GLP requirements. Further, products in the marketplace must meet stringent effectiveness standards, since the public cannot readily ascertain with the naked eye the effectiveness of antimicrobial pesticides. EPA continues to place a priority on ensuring that pesticides are effective to protect human health and the environment.